Women's apparel retailer Coldwater Creek Inc, which warned last week that its fourth-quarter earnings would miss Wall Street's expectations due to disappointing sales of spring merchandise, said last wek that it will reduce its staff by 160, or nearly 8 per cent, and cut discretionary spending.

"Quite simply, those early spring sales did not happen this year, and we are adjusting our staff size to a more efficient base to reflect the change in full-price sales," chief executive Georgia Shonk-Simmons said in a statement.

After the cuts, the company will employ 1,930 people.

Coldwater Creek also said that it had put new hires, nonessential travel, and internal expenditures on hold until consumer confidence increases. Its plans to open 10 to 15 new stores across the country, however, will not be affected.